Upcoming Events
Prev MonthPrev Month Next MonthNext Month
2024 Annual Regional Conference: Ingredients for Impact
Temple B'rith Kodesh
2131 Elmwood Ave
Rochester, NY 14618
Tuesday, May 21, 2024, 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM EDT
Category: Signature Events

The AFP Genesee Valley Chapter invites you to spice up your fundraising journey at our Annual Regional Conference on Tuesday, May 21, 2024.

This year, we're serving up a delectable theme: Ingredients for Impact: What's in Your Secret Sauce?

Get ready to blend creativity with strategy as we whip up a fundraising experience that transcends the ordinary—because in this kitchen, we're creating the recipe for a flavorful and impactful future.


Cost To Attend

AFP Members   $159
AFP Nonmembers   $189
Full Table of 6   $775


Earn up to 4 CFRE Credits by attending the full conference including a table topic session!

Click to See Who's Coming



Kevin Allan
CEO, Changing Our World

The Fundraiser’s Mise en Place: Prepping for Success in Our Changing World

This keynote will take on the dramatic downturn in giving in the United States. Kevin gets that the challenges fundraisers face today are real especially in a time of a Generosity Crisis. Kevin will discuss this recent book and provide a window into best practices or that “special sauce” at orgs big and small, and how their unique people, data, and culture contexts can lead to outsize opportunity.

Participants will learn:

  1. About the changing philanthropic landscape and the urgency and opportunity in evolving their fundraising programs
  2. How to explore the attributes of a well-functioning (and learning) development effort
  3. Ways, they can set themselves up for fundraising success … plan the work, work the plan!

Kevin Allan has spent his entire 25-year career in fundraising and philanthropy. He holds an M.S. in Nonprofit Management from The New School and later taught in the program. Prior to his first tenure at Changing Our World, he was the Development Director at a community foundation, supported the charitable activities of a family office, and worked with Project Concern International in India, an experience that ignited his passion for helping organizations do more for vulnerable populations. He is the Chair of Dutchess Tourism, Dutchess County’s official destination marketing organization, and is an avid, if amateur, cook and gardener.

Changing Our World is a fundraising and philanthropic consultancy firm. As social impact strategists, fundraising specialists, subject matter experts, and management consultants, they work to help corporations, nonprofits, and philanthropists change our world.


Session Speakers

Building Your IDEA Toolkit:
How to Integrate IDEA in Your Fundraising Efforts

Jonathan Meagher-Zayas, MSW, MPA, CFRE, CDP

Founder & Chief Strategist,  Equity Warrior Strategies LLC

Mia Cannon, CFRE

Senior Director of URMC Academic Programs Alumni Relations and Volunteer Engagement


Megan Meyerson

Director of Donor Experience, IPH

Greta Niu, Ph.D.

Director of Grants, Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York

In the last few years, Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Access initiatives have increased, decreased, gained momentum, faced backlash, and did not get anywhere. Unfortunately, when trying to enact complex change on top of generating new revenue, struggling to recruit and retain staff and meeting funder demands is a lot. Despite these challenges, fundraisers should continue pushing for IDEA strategies because they will lead to improved organizational cultures, diversified revenue sources, and addressing community needs. In this session, join a global IDEA educator and fundraiser with a superstar panel of practitioners on how you can build your IDEA fundraising toolkit. The session will talk about IDEA across the fundraising field including major gifts, corporate engagement, grants and foundation relations, annual giving, and communications. You will walk away with emerging knowledge on IDEA, a framework on how to put IDEA into action, and ideas to bring back to your organization. 

• Learn why fundraisers are positioned to advance IDEA in their organizations

• Discover a framework process to help strategize IDEA initiatives.

• Connect with practitioners implementing solutions in their work.

• Brainstorm creative ideas on how to build your personal IDEA toolkit.


Engaging the Planned Giving Donor


Robin Harisis

Legacy and Gift Planning at Lollypop Farm, Humane Society of Greater Rochester

Planned giving engagement can be dynamic, fun, and deeply meaningful to donors. Whether it is presenting the idea of a planned gift or stewardship after the gift is committed, it is imperative to keep this special group of donors engaged. Developing innovative and creative strategies to illustrate impact, deepen connection, and highlight our appreciation during the donor’s lifetime can ensure these important gifts stick. And yes, I did say planned giving engagement is FUN!

During this session, you will learn:

• Why it is important to engage, and steward planned giving donors.

• Fun and unique ways to engage planned giving prospects and the strategy behind it.

• Personal methods to steward your committed planned giving donors to build long-term, meaningful relationships.


Who Should Attend?

This conference is ideal for those in fundraising, including board members, volunteers and executives who work in resource development. Anyone who is interested in learning more about fundraising best practices and expanding their professional network would also benefit.

Sponsorship Opportunities

Our conference is made possible in part by the support of our generous sponsors. Want to become a sponsor and partner with us on our conference?

Click Here to Learn More


Conference Schedule

10:00 am  

Pre-conference Session

This session will be facilitated by Alexandra Bailey, Development Officer with Rochester Regional Health Foundations, and Alison MacKenzie, Director of Development at Genesee Country Village & Museum, of the AFPGV Membership Committee.  The Pre-Conference Session is intended for those who are new to AFP and/or fundraising, or interested in learning more about our chapter and the benefits of membership.

A presentation will be given followed by a panel discussion with seasoned AFPGV members and fundraising professionals, including AFPGV President Danielle Pierleoni, MPA, Advancement Officer at Heritage Christian Services, Charles Levengood, Director of Development at the Seneca Park Zoo, Liam Welsh, Senior Director of Advancement at RIT, and Felicia Garcia-Hartstein, Executive Director, Campaign Management and Special Initiatives at University of Rochester.  Attendees will hear about each panel speaker’s career journey and be able to ask questions of them related to navigating and advancing your fundraising career.

Coffee and light refreshments will be provided.


11:00 am   Registration, Networking, Vendor Exhibits

11:00 - 11:45 am  

Affinity Group Meet & Greet

Attendees are welcome to join an identity-based affinity group table during the pre-conference networking time. These groups are facilitated by fundraising professionals and are meant to create safe spaces for people with shared identities to connect with each other, share resources and provide support.

  • Faith-Based (people who identity as a person of faith)
  • Latinx
  • LGBTQ+
  • People with Disabilities
  • Rochester Advancement Professionals of Color Network 
  • Working Parents
11:45 am   Welcoming Address

12:00 pm  

Lunch and Keynote

The Fundraiser’s Mise en Place: Prepping for Success in Our Changing World

Speaker: Kevin Allan, CEO, Changing Our World


12:50 - 1:05 pm  

Exhibitor Break
Get your passport stamped for a chance to win a prize!  Stamp - Free business icons


1:05 - 1:55 pm  

Afternoon Session 1:

Building Your IDEA Toolkit: How to Integrate IDEA in Your Fundraising Efforts


Jonathan Meagher-Zayas, Equity Warrior & Social Justice Consultant; Nonprofit Capacity Building & Community Engagement Strategist

Mia Cannon, Senior Director of URMC Academic Programs Alumni Relations and Volunteer Engagement

Meghan Meyerson, Director of Donor Experience at IPH Albany

Greta NiuDirector of Grants at Planned Parenthood of Central and Western New York


1:55 - 2:15 pm  

Exhibitor Break
Get your passport stamped for a chance to win a prize!  Stamp - Free business icons


2:15 - 3:00 pm  

Table Topics

Benjamin Murphy - Philanthropy on the Blockchain: Crypto Giving and Nonprofits

This session will: (1) provide a high-level explanation of blockchain technology and cryptocurrency; (2) present nonprofits with an understanding of cryptocurrency’s place in modern philanthropy; (3) discuss the opportunities, risks, and considerations associated with accepting crypto giving; and (4) give an overview of the tools some nonprofits are using to accept charitable gifts of cryptocurrency.


Margit Brazda Poirier - AI for Fundraising and Grant Writing

Let’s face it. AI is now the freshest ingredient out there and soon you won’t be cooking without it. In this session, you will learn how to start using generative AI tools right NOW without spending hours figuring out how to do it on your own. You'll receive "prompts" you can use right away to save time get instant results.


Krista Jenkins - Make your mission bite-sized: Leveraging social media

Having a robust presence on social media is no longer optional for your organization. If you know you want to grow your presence on social media but don't know what to post or where to begin, this session is for you! Together, we'll craft strategy maps that transform your complex mission into shareable content. You'll leave feeling more empowered and inspired to tackle the scary beast of social media! 


Joel Elliott - Work/Life Balance and New Ways of Working

Learn about the latest trends in retirement, radical job transition, the gig economy, the Great Resignation and opportunities for consulting. Come to learn, to question and to offer your own experiences. This lively table topic will start with industry trends and end with ideas you can use to craft a better personal future!


Ryan Hyde - Know Your Ingredients: Moving Beyond the Retention Rate

This session will dive into a metric called a 'coverage ratio,' which looks at total donor population health and offers a smart way to make data driven decisions about your donor acquisition, reactivation, and retention strategies.


Kayla Carpitella & Yukali Okkotsu - What is Community Centric Fundraising?

You may have heard of community centric fundraising, but you are not exactly sure what it is or how to use it. Explore the 10 principles of CCF, a social justice and equity based fundraising model, together as a group and discuss what it might look like in your own organization. 


Stephanie Paredes & Dr. Tomicka Wagstaff - From Awareness to Action: Integrating DEI Principles into Fundraising Efforts

In this dynamic workshop, participants will embark on a transformative journey from mere awareness to tangible action in the realm of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) within the context of fundraising. You will be equipped with the knowledge, tools, and strategies necessary to integrate DEI principles effectively into your fundraising efforts. 


Lydia Palmer - Stewarding Planned Gifts: Why & How

Make it easy for donors to include your organization in their plans!  You’ll learn how to make the Planned Giving process clear and concise for donors while getting the latest on the Big 4 – Bequests, Gift Annuities, RMD’s, and DAF’s. 


Daniel Meyers - Creativity & Resiliency

From the benefactor behind our chapter’s Meyers Scholarship, you’ll learn what it takes to keep going in this business of fundraising and how “Just One” giving campaign is still going strong nearly 30 years later.


Kate Turri - Driving Impact: Exploring Corporate Philanthropy

Sponsors drive most successful fundraising events. What’s the best way to approach businesses? We’ll talk about national trends, avenues to find corporate donors, my stories of success & challenges, the mindset of corporate donors, and the best time to ask for gifts.


Krystle Ellis - Strategies to Foster and Amplify Fundraisers of Color

Attendees will explore potential approaches and best practices for creating a more inclusive fundraising ecosystem, fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion. The discussion will cover topics such as mentorship programs, networking opportunities, and the importance of amplifying diverse voices in fundraising leadership roles. Participants will gain insights into how foundations can play a pivotal role in championing diversity and driving meaningful change in fundraising practices.


Ben Thomas - Diversifying your Donor Base: How to Avoid “One-Size-Fits-All” Fundraising

In the recipe for nonprofit success, one crucial ingredient is a diverse and engaged donor base. In this table topic session, we’ll mix in innovative ideas and proven strategies to help your organization avoid the "one-size-fits-all" approach and create a fundraising program that appeals to a wide variety of supporters.


3:00 - 3:15 pm  

Exhibitor Break
Get your passport stamped for a chance to win a prize!  Stamp - Free business icons


3:15 - 4:00 pm  

Afternoon Session 2: 

Engaging the Planned Giving Donor

Speaker: Robin Harisis, Legacy and Gift Planning at Lollypop Farm, Humane Society of Greater Rochester


4:00 - 4:30 pm  

Housekeeping, Announcements, and Final Remarks


4:30 - 5:30 pm  

Networking and Happy Hour

The happy hour reception is open to all attendees and will be held in honor of our Meyers Scholarship awardees past and present. Each attendee will receive a complimentary drink ticket and appetizers will be served. 

Networking Happy Hour July 21st | PCMA